tsunamis and new year brings us closer together

although the tsunamis hit lands in the far away from here, we know there are many friends, colleagues, neighbors and acquantainces who are suffering losses and hurt of this natural disaster.

many communities are joining together to pool relief efforts. in chicago, i witnessed a meeting yesterday w/ leaders from the indonesian, indian and thai communities lead by a statement and speech by rev. jesse jackson, sr. after the tv news crew left, we sat down to talk about what needs to be done by our chicago communities to help those in need. medical and food demands are immediate, but the effects of this disaster are going to be long-lasting. these countries will need to rebuild entire regions, everything from the public infrastuctures to communities and economies.

families have been torn apart. thousands of children were victims, and i overheard a comment that we’ve lost a generation. of those who survived, they are now orphans. i know many americans will look to adopt these children, but that requires changes in immigration policies to expedite their entry and placement into homes.

most relief fund entities, such as the american red cross, doctors without borders and unicef (just to name a few) have deployed resources across the area and are looking mainly for monetary donations and volunteers. the money will help directly by providing funds for immediate expenses (e.g., travel for voluneers and medical supplies) while supporting local economies. for a list of other organization supporting disaster relief in southeast asia, check out the network for good, a resource for nonprofit organizations.

local environment and global weather is going to be greatly affected. i’m not an environmental expert, but the winds in chicago last night and this unusually warm weather are concerning.

anyway, a few thoughts for the new year. this is a moment in history not to be forgotten, as we’ll feel the effects for years to come.

peace & joy this holiday season…

other resources include: bloggers without borders, lost remote, metroblogging bangkok and tsunami help.

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